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that the prevailing sentiments of my breast are compassion and sorrow." P. 47. 1
By what progress in thinking, the author steps from young ladies to tithes, we are at a loss to conjecture. But on no subject has he displayed less judgment than on this. Very far indeed is the actual collection of tithes in these days from " increasing /more than in former times) dissenting congregations throughout the country." The growing practice of compounding for all tithes, and the legal commutations for land, being put together, it is probable, that the tithes now taken in kind are less by three parts in four (we had almost said nine in ten) than they were a hundred years ago. The peroration (at p. 70, &c.) is very animated; but in the note (at p. 71) the author's demand upon Grand Juries is unlimited and very extravagant.
Art. 20. A Sermon preached at the Anniversary Messing of the Sons of the Clergy, in the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, tut Thursday, May 5, 1805. By the Re-j. Charles Barker, B.D. F.A.S. Canon Residentiary of Wells, &c. To 'which are added Li/is of the Nobility, £sV. 'who have been Stewards for the Feast qf the Sons of the Clergy, &c, 4to. 50 pp. is. Rivingtons, Sec. 1806,
On perusing this sermon, we have felt more than usual regret at having so long delayed our notice of it. Seldom, very seldom, have we seen so much vigour and originality of thought, united with so much eloquence of expression, in the compass of such a composition. Mr. Barker is indeed a most persuasive advocate, for those whose cause he undertook; and gives more grace and freshness, to a subject annually treated, than an ordinary writer would infuse into the most novel topic. One or two obscurities of construction, and one or two sentences rather too long suspended, are the utmost we can object to it, while the passages which we could cite as vigorous, beautiful, or touching, are almost as numerous as the pages.
In his general considerations on benevolence, Mr. B. connects it not only with the christian dispensation, but with the scriptural character of the Almighty, under the law. In various parts of this introductory division of his discourse he is luminous and instructive; but when he descends to the more particular subjects of his exhortation he becomes much more interesting. The situation of the orphans of the clergy, the character of the parents, the nature of their duties, the excellence of the church, all these topics have been treated continually; yet by the mode of hand, ling they are here made new. Speaking of the orphans, the preacher fays j
f They bring with them, I had almost said the strongest of all claims to prompt and generous relief, that which is seen in the sad and deplorable change from good to evil. Not only are they fatherJess and poor; not only do they lament, in common with others, the loss of the friendly instructor, the beloved and revered protector, but they are brought do<wn from their accustomed place.— They have enjoyed the comforts of life, perhaps of a liberal and polished kind—those comforts are taken from them. Their's is, indeed, a bitter sorrow, and a marked and melancholy destitution; while all went well with them, it is not probable that they were very solicitously prepared for the change which has befallen them. It might have been prudent^ perhaps, to interrupt their thoughtless felicity, and to fortify their minds against the ills to come; but where is the parental wisdom that shall act with such severe precaution, or where the reflection of childhood, that shall prosit by such a lesson i It is reasonable to suppose that poverty and humiliation found most of them unprepared; their claim to your compassion therefore is of singular weight and urgency; they are poor, and they have known better days; they deserve your pity, and want your aid in common with all the fatherless and indigent; and they deserve and want them the more, because they knew not that they should ever need them; because their life was a life of hope, and because that hope is gone." P. ix.
We are sensible that to take pieces, from such a discourse, is to mutilate rather than to illustrate. We shall therefore cite no more, but content ourselves with adding, that if this passage be thought good, there are many others at least equal to it.
Art. 2J. A Sermon preached in the Cathedral Church of Dur. ham, July 30, 1806, at the Affixes holden before the Ho*. ■Sir Robert Graham and the Hon. Sir Thomas Manners Stttton, Barons of his Majesty's Court of Exchequer at Westminster. By Thomas Zouch, D.D. F.L.S. Prebendary of Durham. Publijhtd at the Request of the Honourable and Right Reverend the Lord Bist/op of Durham. 4to. 19 pp. is. Payne, tec. 1800.
As might be expected from the name and character of the author, this is a sensible and well-written discourse. Its chief object is to state the contrast between the injustice, oppression, and venality of the Roman provincial government, and the pure and upright administration of justice in our own country. The injustice of the Roman governors is particularly exemplified in the conduct of both Felix and Fcstus towards St. Paul, whose eloquence and Christian virtues are, on the other hand, justly extolled. There is in the following passage an elegance, which Induces us to quote it, though we know not whence the author has taken the design of his second emblem.
"Amongst other emblematical figures of Justice, (he w»s sometimes exhibited to her votaries with a veil over her face, to .
denote that all personal considerations were to be laid aside, and that every cause was to be decided only by its genuine merits. She has been with no less propriety represented with the veil torn from before her eyes, attended by Religion, while the fun, shining from above, gilds the scene with his enlivening radiance, and illuminates every thing around: thus intimating, that in the dispensation of justice the most reverential awe of the Supreme Being is essentially necessary, without any dark design, without any artful concealment. Such a picture is in perfect agreement with that truly elegant description in which the Psalmist has introduced her, as associating herself with Mercy, Truth, and Peace, united with them in the closest bonds of friendship and affection*. But where is this lovely assemblage to be found, if not in this our land of civil and religious liberty? With us justice is properly tempered with mercy, while the investigation of truth, and the preservation of peace, are the great objects which it pursues with unwearied assiduity." P. 17.
We fee with pleasure a new edition of Isaac Walton's Lives, as published by Dr. Zouch, announced at the end of this sermon. Long may the author enjoy that situation which a distinguishing patron has bestowed, in his and many other cafes, with a view to merit alone.
Art. Z2. The Battle of Armageddon; or final Triumph of tie Protestant Cause. 12mo. z6 pp. is. Hntchard. 1806.
A most rapturous " Address to the Messiah," is followed by "Observations on the prophecies now fulfilling in the world. '* Among which observations, these arc the principal: "By which time, according to the Julian calculation, in the year 1848, and according to the full calculation in the year 1866, I have no doubt, but that both the Roman Catholic and Mahometan Apostacies, and every corruption of real Christianity, will be exploded and done away, and the Kingdom of the Mountain, predicted by the prophet Daniel, will be fully established." P. 13. "These confederate powers are to be brought together to a place called Armageddon; which, translated from the Hebrew, literally means the destruction of troops: it is said to be situated between the seas, of the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs, and to be without the Roman empire, or great city." "May there not be a country, which possesses the distinguishing marks, and has never been included in the temporal dominion of the Roman empire, though it contains an opposition in religious sentiment, and the Protestants in it have been a suffering people, which continued a separate kingdom, while the great Protestant power, with which it is now cemented, remained a horn of the beast, which yoke was shaken off by this power at a very early stage of the reforma.
lion, at the exp^nce of the blood of our holiest martyrs, anc} which has ever since continued true to the Protestant cause?" P. 20.
In the concluding pages there are many sentiments which we commend. The whole book contains some learning, mixed with much enthusiasm.
Art. 23. Prayers in Time of War arid public Danger. 8vft 20 pp. 6d. Hatchard. 1806.
A short advertisement says, " the following prayers were printed for the use of a clerical society, and are now published at the request of some much respected friends to the society." The society here mentioned is, we conceive, "the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge and Church Union in the Diocese of St. David's," an institution planned by the present ex. emplary Bishop of that diocese, and established under his immediate patronage. We (hall soon take occasion to notice a sermon preached before that society; but in the mean time we are anxious to fay of these prayers that which is but strict justice to fay: that they are so well chosen, and so judiciously adapted to the necessity of the times, that, in our opinion, a mere perusal of them is more edifying than that of many well-composed and really useful discourses. The adoption of them, whether in public or in private, could not fail to be attended with the most benevolent effects; since they inculcate the very temper and spirit which the present times so imperiously demand, and without which we shall probably be destined to partake the chastisements which are now so strikingly bestowed upon the nations of Europe.
Some of the prayers are selected from the Collects and Services of the Church, some from the Scriptures, and one most admirable petition is said to be taken chiefly from the Sacra Prrvata of the excellent Bishop Wilson. One short prayer we cannot but extract as a pledge for the truth of our assertions.
"Far Resignation to the Will of God.
"5. O Lord, settle in our hearts an unfeigned bcliesin thee, and an entire submission to thy will; that, being emptied of all selfish solicitude, we may never be disturbed by restless fears and anxieties about events, which are in thy disposal; but, with holy indifference to mere earthly good and evil, may lay strong hold on thee, and put our trust under the shadow of thy all-wise and almighty Providence. And grant that, setting our affections on things above, and not on things on the earth, we may live a life of faith, of fortitude, and duty, through Jesus Christ our Lord Amen." P. 6.
We appeal to every serious Christian, whether these are not exactly the feelings which the times demand, and which there
"5 fore fore ought to be as much as possible inculcated. The two following prayers for " Fortitude and Patience," and for " Growth in Grace," breathe exactly the fame spirit, and are equally excellent in expression. We (hall earnestly wish to fee other societies instituted, in imitation of that for which these prayers were selected and composed; and (hall very soon give a further account of the institution. / • •
A«T. ■ef. A .Letter to /t Country Gentleman en the SubjcS as Methodism, confined chiefly to its Cmufes, Progress, and Consequences in Ixis won Neighbourhood. Frim the Clergyman of hit Parish. 8vo. 44 pp. ts. 6d. Ipswich, printed; Rivingtons, &c. London.
The design of this letter is to furnish the person addressed with Answers to. the three following questions:
"1. What are the real doctrines and principles o£ Methodism?
"2. What are the causes of the rapid progress these sectaries are making in his neigkbourhoovl?
"3. Wliat are the consequences, good or bad, both in a fe. laical and moral view of them, that are likely to ensue from the increase of this sect, and the prevalence of their docrines?"
The first head is by no means fully treated; but under it the author urges some very strong charges ngainst thoie sectaries *vith nohow be has himself cen<verfed. Namely, that they pretend, from secret assurances of the Spirit, to know •" the precise time and marks, by which the teacher is himself called into the number of the elect, and by which his followers may infallibly know the fame;" and also, what he expressly asserts he had from themselves, " that, after they are thus called, it is impossible for them to come under the dominion of (in, or incur the guilt of it any more." Of such doctrines, by whomsoever they may be held, a sound member of the Church of England can have no hesitation to say, that they are false, dangerous, and abomiQible. The subsequent denial of good works (p. 7) is equally Grange. Because they could never have purchased salvation, which certainly they could not, these people deny them altogether; applying to works with faith, what is true of them without it.
To the second question, concerning the increase of the Me. thodists, this author replies, that he thinks them rather decreasing in his neighbourhood (p. 9). He considers, however, several real or alledged causes for their success.
To the third, or political enquiry, he does not answer so distinctly. It is clear, however, that he thinks the political tendency of the sect in question pernicious, and that he even suspects them of .Jacobinism. The strong resemblance to the puritans is not forgotten. *- „ • - '•
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